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In the world of Reality TV, Virtual Reality, and the move to “Keep it Real”, there seems to me to still be a lot of confusion and ambiguity. I’ll give one illustration.
I love watching Gordon Ramsey’s shows. There’s Kitchen Nightmares, Hell’s Kitchen, Master Chef, The f-Word (F stands for Food, what did you think it was for?), and Hotel Hell. (I really wish Hotel Hell would come back.) My illustration comes from Kitchen Nightmares. I do believe that much of it is real, but sometimes, I wonder if the owner’s attitudes are a bit embellished for ratings sake. I mean, they did ask him to come help them fix their restaurant, right? They’ve seen the show, right? Why do they insist on their food being 8 or 9 out of 10?
Well, we work in the reality world here too. But this is the Word on Master Remodeling Hell Nightmares. (Ok, that show probably won’t fly with Fox.)
A current client has assigned us the task of designing their new home. During a recent design meeting, the topic of their front entry was being reviewed and discussed. As the basic manikin had been laid out, the task was to add the dress and jewelry.
As happens in many design presentations, there is much discussion and reviewing over the function of the space as well as the features and beauty it will provide for the family that will live there. There is also much to say about the statement the space will make to guests.
This entry is no exception. Being the first impression on guests; a source of personal accomplishment; and the best way to set the tone of your home, the entry deserves more than cursory attention.
This client wanted to make a grand statement about their home. The basic manikin started like this…
They wanted a feeling something like this picture (this picture came direct from them)
And, while it isn’t quite complete, this is what the model looks like thus far.
I’ll post some renderings when it is complete.
Literally, we raised the roof, and the whole house.
A client of ours needed a new home and wanted to find one in which they could make their mark. They found a humble, one-story, brick ranch-style home and came to us to see what they could do.
This is what we came up with thru the design process. This project gives a new light to home remodeling!
I’m going to share some common thoughts about remodeling here. You think about some one-word adjectives and see if we’re on the same page. Scary. Over-budget. Scary. Long. Headache. Scary. Dusty. Frustrating. Did I mention scary?
But what would you say if I told you remodeling could be fun? Crazy? Wait! Please hear me out.
…continue reading Fun in remodeling »
A client has recently asked us to design an outdoor hot tub for their patio, but with a unique request. They want it to automatically open and close. We suggested the possibility of a cover that lifts over the in-ground tub, and they were curious about that concept.
Hence, we reviewed the needs and created a 3D model of the concept of how it could work. Then, I created this video. There may be other concepts coming. We’ll see how it turns out! Watch the video and let me know what do you think of this concept?
Yes, it has been a while since I’ve updated you on the Remodeling with ease series. There are several reasons for this, including two major holidays since the last update, but most importantly, the clients’ personality. To be clear, I hold no ill toward them, and have no frustration with them at all!
In the world of fast paced, 140 character updates, personal space and lines being misunderstood, etc., it would be easy to get frustrated with someone who takes their time. “But I want to update my blog…I need more content!” Hold on just one moment-this is the very purpose of this series! In our business model, our personal needs must take back seat to our clients’ needs – no, not even 2nd place. We call it the “ego-ectomy”. This is a very painful and gory procedure, but not a story for now. These clients’ “buy-cycle” is slower than others. That’s not wrong or bad, it’s just the way it is. And since we’re talking about “remodeling with ease“ then we need to make this easy for the clients, not us.
The “Design/Build” jargon is a fashionable one lately. People are starting to recognize benefit and value to the process. Contractors are learning what it is, and how it helps both them and their clients in the remodeling world. But, definitions are still a moving target and practices are quite different.
Ultimately, homeowners are purchasing the project, and thus, it is my belief, that the clients should be the ones making the choices and decisions. How many times, though, do we see homeowners that have a difficult time making decisions? I’ve heard the stories from both homeowners and contractors that decisions about such a large project in their lives can be very difficult to conclude!
All businesses have a business model – whether they realize it or not. Yes, that means some business models are not fully intentional. I must admit, creating a business model can be difficult, but it is important. It takes creativity, forethought, insight, and a lot of pure blood, sweat, and tears to create a business model.
The answer depends on whether you are a business person or a customer, but it is important to both.
…continue reading Is your model important? »
This question is important to ask for many reasons, and it plays an important role in our business for two reasons.
Most importantly, we ask this question of our clients since we are working to design something that fits them, and meets them in their taste. This makes it hard, since each project is unique, to share a portfolio of projects. Experience has taught us that what fit the last client most likely will not fit you. It hasn’t happened yet! So our goal is to learn about our client, in their home habits, circumstance, and needs.
…continue reading What’s unique about you? »
A recent article in the Residential Design + Build magazine piqued my interest. The author states throughout the article, and in the title, that architects/designers should lead design/build projects. Mr. Jauregui makes many great points about the fallacies of the design-then-bid-then-build model, and I refer you to the article to read more about that. He also outlines many of the advantages of the design/build model that I have mentioned as well.
However, to state empirically that the designer/architect should always take the lead on projects doesn’t add up to me. My experience shows that clients do benefit greatly when the builder takes the lead.
Am I slamming architects/designers?
…continue reading Taking the lead: builder or designer? »